Novotny powers Panthers to Homecoming rout


JOSH KOLL, Plymouth tailback, follows teammate Derek Novotny who looks to block a Winneconne defender in Friday’s ECC football game. PHS quarterback Cade Knaus is pictured right. – Photo by Tyler Luedtke JOSH KOLL, Plymouth tailback, follows teammate Derek Novotny who looks to block a Winneconne defender in Friday’s ECC football game. PHS quarterback Cade Knaus is pictured right. – Photo by Tyler Luedtke PLYMOUTH – Senior tailback Derek Novotny rushed for 131 yards and three touchdowns to spark the Plymouth Panthers to a 40-0 trouncing of Ripon in football action Friday night at Finke Field.

The Homecoming victory raised the Panthers’ East Central Conference record to 3-2 (4-3 overall). The Tigers fell to 1-4 in the ECC (2-5 overall).

“I was very pleased with our performance. We played a very complete game,” said Panther head coach Dan Knaus.

“We had good balance on offense and controlled the line of scrimmage. We had a little letdown in the middle of the first quarter but after that we really played well.”

The Panthers busted the game open with a 21-point third quarter which hiked their lead to 40-0.


TAYLOR STRUVE, Plymouth linebacker, returns an interception for a touchdown against Ripon during Friday’s ECC football game. – Photo by Tyler Luedtke TAYLOR STRUVE, Plymouth linebacker, returns an interception for a touchdown against Ripon during Friday’s ECC football game. – Photo by Tyler Luedtke The Panthers steamrolled Ripon’s defense for 218 yards rushing. The PHS defense held the Tigers to a measly 18 yards on the ground and only 144 in total offense.

“Defensively, we did a nice job of making them one dimensional by shutting their run down and forcing them to be pass-happy,” said Knaus.

Inside linebacker Taylor Struve returned an interception 35 yards for the Panthers’ final TD. Plymouth’s other two TDs came on a passes to wide receiver Mackade Mella from quarterback Cade Knaus.

Struve led the PHS defense in solo tackles with six and total tackles with nine. Inside linebacker Jack Nytes was second in total tackles with eight, including four solos. Holden Reilly had an interception.

“Derek and Josh [Koll] ran hard and the receivers caught the ball well. I thought Taylor Struve and Jack Nytes played well at linebacker and our blitz package created four [quarterback] sacks,” said coach Knaus.

Koll was Plymouth’s second leading rusher in the game with 56 yards on only six carries.


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